Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Consejos with Zone Leaders and Assistants

We put the camera on timer- so not the best. These are our hard working zone leaders who come in every 6 weeks for a conference. After the meetings I have them to our home for a dinner. This picture shows them satisfied and happy, a few look like they are even sleeping. They are:
(back left) Pres., Hermn. Elders Squires, Armstrong, Morgan, Hawks , Maxfield, Slater, Rubiolo, (middle left) Berrocal, Phippen, Mianeri, Crunkelton, Sullivan, Parry, Lewis, Pedersen, Miles. (floor) Wells, Whiteford, Fuentes, Malaki
They all love their tacos because they live in a world of Italian pastas. It is fun to cook for them because they appreciate the food so much. These are wonderful young men who are becoming Great because of the struggles and challenges they experience everyday.
We had so many for dinner we had to include a VIP table, at least that is what these elders called it.
Hermana Mallea in the kitchen, with a before picture. Yes, that green bowl is a huge bowl of guacamole. Within 15 minutes all of it was gone.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Elder Yachovitch

Elder Yachovitch with President Lindahl saying goodbye at the airport. Elder Yachovitch we will always love you. Your example to all our missionaries was great. You hung in there through many hard days and you still came out with a smile. Keep up your Spanish!

Monday, March 16, 2009

More Mission Experiences

During Vendimia, there arrived on our doorstep a crate of grapes. They were sent by Bishop Diego Paez and Gabriella who wanted to make sure we tasted enough grapes. Hermana Mallea has been working all week to make them into marmalade and not waste them. We took the Paez's out to dinner just to celebrate the experience. We had the best "petite" steaks there are in the world.
Saying good bye to the best assistants in the world (Notice the matching ties from last zone conference). There is more "animo" in these four young men than any fortune 500 company. They have created a new feeling in the mission of excitement, and desire to excel. All four will be home in one more transfer. It will be a sad day.
Left to right- Elders Pedersen (Arg.), Anaya (Mexico), Rubiolo (Arg.), Sander(Urug.)

Monday, March 9, 2009

Home Delivery Truck

Followed this truck for a few blocks. Had to stop and take a photo as he stopped to park in front of a home. He is the home delivery fruit and vegetable truck. I love the concept for the U.S., now if only the U.S. had the produce of Argentina. Beautiful produce picked ripe on the vine. The difference in taste is unbelievable.

A New Mission Presidency

Finally the Mission Presidency is complete. (left to right) Elder Jarvis (1st Counselor), President and I, Pres. Rastelli (in the back, 2nd Counselor), Brother Acosta (right, Secretary, his wife is upfront). President Lindahl finally feels at peace, and is looking forward to the help in making the Mendoza area stronger. These men are humble but strong men.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Vendimia Celebration (Most Important Time of the Year)

Vendimia is a celebration of the grape harvest. It is an event that brings tourists from around the world. There is wine tasting, beauty queens, parades, concerts each night in the plaza, a huge program at the amphitheater, and nightly fireworks. These office Elders came to keep us laughing, (Elder Salmon, Stevenson, Williams), we bought cottom candy, and princess crowns (for Sister Jarvis, Brown, and myself not the Elders).
Each province of Mendoza was represented with their own colorful traditional clothing and beautiful horses. There were probably around 2,000 riders in the parade.
This picture was taken from our home, we just happen to live on the parade route. See the children with the baskets tied to a stick. That is for catching fruit being thrown from the floats.
Of course no parade is a parade without soldiers with guns! Well, these guns wouldn't hurt too much, I doubt they work. These soldiers are a representation of those who came into the valley in the early 1800's with San Martin from Chile. They battled against Spain to free the country. They had representations of the old canons and San Martin himself rode a mule looking horse to start off the parade. He was dressed in a gaucho hat and poncho. San Martin is probably the most important person to the people here in Argentina. There are busts of him in every city.
Notice the length of hair, the ropes, and knives tucked in their belts in the back. These are not the Rough Riders of Provo, these are REAL cowboys (just kidding RR's).
Traditional gauchos of Argentina were working cowboys who herded the cows in the pampas (grasslands) and were also hunters. This gaucho would represent the northern region. You can tell by his face that he is proud of his heritage.
There were numerous father and sons, some even younger than this boy. They each were well trained and efficent riders. You could tell they were raised on the back of a horse. It's hard to see, but the father and the son have light colored eyes. Very typical of the Europeans here in Mendoza.
Yes, there were even princesses. This picture is for my granddaughters. There were a few young ladies in the parade riding with their long skirts, a few rode side-saddle.

This is an example of their floats, pulled by semi trucks. Not exactly the Rose Parade, but it was colorful. Each of the 13 provinces had their own float and royal court. The young ladies threw grapes, plums, apples, melons from their floats (which ever fruit was grown in their area).
If you notice the horse poop in the street, you will understand why they needed those stilts (just kidding). If you would see the faces up close you would see that they were pretty scary guys. The kids loved them.
This picture is for my mom. This float made me chuckle. They had a float for the queens from years past. They each looked like they were really having a great time. These lovely ladies gently handed the fruit to the people, none of that throwing the fruit and having it land splat on the ground and go to waste.
As you all know Argentina is know for it's beef, well the other meat that they produce and sell is goat meat. It is popular in this region. Inside our mission boundaries is an area called Malargue. Each year they have a goat festival and kill and eat over 2,000 goats. This is the traditional way to cook and smoke the meat. Every fine restaurant in town has a window on the street where you can pass by and watch them barbeque their meat.